Friday, September 8
Who woulda thunk it? Some 11 years after breaking into the grunge/pop-punk buzz bin with "Santa Monica" and Sparkle and Fade, Everclear is still alive and kicking and kicking out the jams. Their new album, Welcome to the Drama Club, will be released September 12 on Eleven Seven Records.
Of course, Everclear has always been the creative domain of Art Alexakis - relying on his songwriting and deep personal well of woes (failed mariages, bankruptcy, drug dependency) to build songs chock-a-block with musical and emotional crescendoes. Now 42, the singer is still at his best when spitting venom at any number of enemies - whether personal or political. First single "Hater" has already drawn much attention for its religion-baiting, "Hater Jesus" music video.
Vocally, Alexakis still has all the range of an arthritic snail. And his song structures haven't changed a whole hell of a lot over the years, either. If one hears an Everclear tune, one immediately KNOWS it's an Everclear tune. That can be a good thing; brand recognition and all. But obviously it can be interpreted from the negative end of the spectrum as well; heard one Everclear song, heard 'em all.
So... Welcome to the Drama Club isn't likely to earn Everclear many new fans. But the old diehards should be neither surprised nor disappointed by what they find there. That may be small comfort for the band, but it's exactly things like comfort and familiarity that keep a rock outfit rolling into their second decade of existence.
From the LP Welcome to the Drama Club, 2006 >>>
From the LP Slow Motion Daydream, 2003 >>>
From the LP Songs From an American Movie, Vol. 1, 2000 >>>